The pictures reveal: the classic arena’s change • Inaugurated during the big folk festival: “It’s a total make over”
Published: 25 maj
Updated: 25 maj
1 out of 7Foto: ATG Play
Around 40,000 spectators come to the Solvalla national arena during the Elite race weekend.
Then Solvalla rebuilds.
– I’ve been a little worried, but now it’s finally ready, says the track’s CEO, Jörgen Forsberg, about the total renovation.
As early as Friday, the national track Solvalla kicks off its Elite race weekend.
On Sunday, the Elitloppet is run with a first prize of five million kroner.
In parallel with preparing for this year’s sporting highlight, the course has been rebuilt, this in the cream of the crop at the luxury restaurant Kongressen, which accommodates approximately 650 seated guests with the best view.
A few weeks ago, Kongressen looked like a construction site and it was hard to imagine that it would be finished by the weekend.
– It is a total make over. I feel calm, said the event manager at Solvalla, Malin Karlsson, two weeks ago, in a feature on ATG Play.
Banan’s CEO: “Done with the renovation”
During the weekend, around 40,000 spectators are expected to come to Solvalla to enjoy absolutely world-class competitions.
Jörgen Forsberg, managing director at Solvalla, has been a little concerned during the construction project, but can now state that everything has gone completely according to plan and that the Congress has a new look ahead of the Elitloppet.
– We are finished with the renovation, there is only plaster left at the end. You could say we’ve made an upgrade. The guests will recognize themselves in the Congress, how it is structured. But it is much fresher with new toilets, carpets and a brand new bar. I think people will appreciate it, he tells Trav365.
How worried have you been that you won’t be ready in time for the Elitloppet?
– I have been involved in many renovations and have been a little worried, but now it is finally ready. I have even thought that how is it even possible to finish in time? But it has gone very well and actually it was practically finished already last Friday. We are well prepared to receive guests during the weekend.
So many will: “Difficult to value”
Forsberg is hopeful and hopes that as many people as possible visit the national track during the weekend.
A large public festival is expected, but exactly how many will actually come is extra difficult to predict this year.
– The ticket situation looks good, it is currently at the same level as it was at this time last year. During the Elite Race Sunday last year, 19,591 people came. Many people stayed at home during the weekend because of the rain. This year, we want everyone to arrive and not leave the tickets littering some kitchen table, says Forsberg and continues:
– I don’t think it’s a utopia that there could be 25,000 this year on Sunday, but it’s hard to estimate. There is another tricky thing why it is difficult to really count how many people will come. Anyone with a Svensk Travsport annual pass may enter on all three days. If you are eligible with an annual pass, then just come here. There are approximately 20,000 cards in circulation. It’s new for this year.
The quality: “Can’t ask for more”
How do you feel about the Elitloppet 2023?
– The weather should be nice, the salary will come on Thursday and we have fantastic horses in many races, you can’t ask for more in either the Elite Race or the Elite Battle. Harpers had a good race and then Joviality in the Four-Year-Old Elite, just to name a few. It’s also extra fun this year that so many foreign drivers are coming, such as Dexter Dunn and Alexandre Abrivard and others.
The elite race is run at Solvalla in Stockholm on Sunday, May 28.
The race is decided with two heats where the top four go to the final.
In the Elitloppet’s final, eight horses compete for the first prize of five million kroner.
Reigning champion is Etonnant with driver Anthony Barrier.
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